That's a 17 percent drop in an industry that seemed impervious to the weakening economy just a few years ago. The total haul of $965.5 million was the lowest for the first half of the year since 2005 when gross revenue was $730.9 million.
Ticket sales also were off. The top 100 acts sold an average of 6,951 tickets per show, down about 9 percent from 7,639 during the same period in 2009.
Declining ticket sales have been evident in the number of cancellations this year for usually bankable stars.
Major acts such as The Eagles, Christina Aguilera, Rihanna and the Lilith Fair have canceled or curtailed tours, but Pollstar editor in chief Gary Bongiovanni said others — including Lady GaGa, Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber and Muse — aren't having problems moving tickets.
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